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  • Published:
    September 20, 2013
  • Languages:
  • Audiences:
  • Technology:
    Microsoft Visual Studio 2012
  • Credit toward certification:
    Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA)

Software Testing Fundamentals

This exam has been retired

For currently available options, please see the Microsoft Certification exam list.

Skills measured

This exam measures your ability to accomplish the technical tasks listed below. The percentages indicate the relative weight of each major topic area on the exam. The higher the percentage, the more questions you are likely to see on that content area on the exam. View video tutorials about the variety of question types on Microsoft exams.

Please note that the questions may test on, but will not be limited to, the topics described in the bulleted text.

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Describe testing fundamentals (15‒20%)
  • Describe software testing
    • Measure software quality and testing benefits
  • Describe software and hardware components
    • Distinguish operating systems, network, data, and hardware and software and their interaction and dependencies
  • Describe fundamentals of programming
    • Data types; distinguish programming languages, such as compiled or interpreted; and analyze simple algorithms
  • Describe application lifecycle management
    • Agile, waterfall, spiral, product and project lifecycles
Describe testing methodology (10‒15%)
  • Describe testing techniques
    • Manual testing, automated testing, distinguish black box and white box testing
  • Describe testing levels
    • Unit, component, and integration testing
  • Describe testing types
    • Functional, performance structural, regression, security, stress, accessibility, usability, and localization testing
Create software tests (20‒25%)
  • Describe user-centric testing
    • Business need and issues, customer requirements, and scenarios
  • Describe software testability
    • Test-driven development and testing hooks
  • Create test plan components
    • Test schedule, scope, methodology, scenarios, and tools
  • Describe feature tests
    • Distinguish the functionality in the appropriate feature test
  • Define appropriately scoped test cases
    • Boundary conditions, level of detail, and validity
Manage software testing projects (15‒20%)
  • Describe testing milestones
    • Process fundamentals, exit criteria, and sign off
  • Describe the agile process
    • Scrum, kanban, and sprint management
  • Work with distributed teams
    • Communication, risk management, schedule management, and delivery process
  • Define test reports
    • Define appropriate status and project report components, define reporting cadence to meet project milestones, identify appropriate recipients for various report types
Work with bugs (15‒20%)
  • Detect software defects
    • Executing test cases, running automation scripts
  • Log bugs
    • Priority, severity, dependency, and repro steps
  • Manage bugs
    • Triage, resolution, closing, monitoring, and bug summary reports
Automate software testing (10‒15%)
  • Describe test automation
    • Benefits, candidates for automation, and automation process
  • Define test automation strategies
    • Code coverage, logging, and automation priority
  • Write automation tests
    • Logic, error handling, commenting, and virtual machines
  • Manage test scripts
    • Smoke test, build verification test, and lab management

Who should take this exam?

Candidates for this exam are seeking to prove core testing skills. Before taking this exam, candidates should have solid foundational knowledge of the topics outlined on this exam details page. It is recommended that candidates be familiar with the concepts of and have some hands-on experience with the technologies or practices described here, either by taking relevant training courses or by working with tutorials and samples available on MSDN and in Microsoft Visual Studio.

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Preparing for an exam

We recommend that you review this exam preparation guide in its entirety and familiarize yourself with the resources on this website before you schedule your exam. See the Microsoft Certification exam overview for information about registration, videos of typical exam question formats, and other preparation resources. For information on exam policies and scoring, see the Microsoft Certification exam policies and FAQs.


This preparation guide is subject to change at any time without prior notice and at the sole discretion of Microsoft. Microsoft exams might include adaptive testing technology and simulation items. Microsoft does not identify the format in which exams are presented. Please use this preparation guide to prepare for the exam, regardless of its format. To help you prepare for this exam, Microsoft recommends that you have hands-on experience with the product and that you use the specified training resources. These training resources do not necessarily cover all topics listed in the "Skills measured" section.